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Friday
Jul082011

News Corp's Bid For BSkyB Uncertain 

WILLIAM WEST/AFP/Getty Images(LONDON) -- Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation ended a tumultuous week with news that their proposed takeover bid of British Sky Broadcasting (BSkyB) is in jeopardy.

News Corp. announced on Thursday that it was closing their 168-year old tabloid, News of the World after revelations that it hacked into and deleted a missing 13-year-old girl’s phone in 2002. News of the World has been embroiled in allegations of hacking into the phones of members of the royal family, cabinet members and victims of the July 7, 2005 London subway and bus bombings.  Although News Corp. survived these past scandals, this week's revelations have led to public and political uproar forcing U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron to announce independent inquiries into the newspaper’s activities.

The communications regulator, Ofcom, issued a statement on Tuesday about the issue.  "In the light of the current public debate about phone hacking and other allegations, Ofcom confirms that it has a duty to be satisfied on an ongoing basis that the holder of a broadcasting licence is 'fit and proper'."

The New York Times reports that BSkyB's shares dropped by 7 percent from Monday and over 500,000 petition signatures opposing the media conglomerate's bid have been submitted to an advocacy group and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. 

Culture secretary Jeremy Hunt has delayed a decision on the bid until September due to political pressure following the scandal and the volume of objections his ministry has received.

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ABC News Radio